‘Trocks’ of Fun

Photo by Sascha Vaughn.
Photo by Sascha Vaughn.

By Steve Sucato

What happens when you cross RuPaul with Carol Burnett and classical ballet? You get the world’s most beloved ballet-parody drag company, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. Founded in 1974, the New York-based Russian-style troupe with the French name brings its award-winning humor to the Byham Theater for a Pittsburgh Dance Council show Friday, April 5. The Trocks have delighted audiences globally with their faithful renditions of ballet classics and contemporary works — performed by classically trained male dancers in every role — while spoofing ballet’s conventions, accidents and pretenses. The early practice of non-Russian dancers adopting Russian stage names is mocked with monikers like Nadia Doumiafeyva and Mikhail Mypansarov. The troupe performs the Spanish-themed “Paquita,” with music by Ludwig Minkus; founding director/choreographer Peter Anastos’ clever sendup of George Balanchine‘s “Concerto Barocco,” entitled “Go For Barocco,” to music by Bach; and its signature work, “Swan Lake Act II.”

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo – Friday, April 5 at 8 p.m. Byham Theater, 101 Sixth St., Downtown. $19-48. 412-456-6666 or www.trustarts.org.

This article first appeared in Pittsburgh City Paper April 3, 2013. Copyright Steve Sucato.